LiLi at the Hyatt Hotel and Casino Manila

I love Chinese food! 

Yes, you read that right. Despite the fact that we always have Chinese food at home and most, if not all, of our family gatherings are held in Chinese restaurants, I tend to choose a basket of dimsum over a slice of pizza anyday.

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It's then no surprise that I immediately said yes when my friend and fellow blogger Spanky invited me to have dimsum lunch with him at Hyatt Hotel's signature Chinese restaurant -- LiLi.

It was actually not my first time to dine here. A couple of years ago, I had the privilege to accompany my former boss on one of his monthly restaurant reviews and it just so happen that he invited me to join him at LiLi! I can't remember exactly which dishes we had but all I remembered was they were all delicious and I had a marvelous time admiring Lili's beautiful modern Chinese interiors.

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Our meal began with the traditional Gongfu tea ceremony. In China, this is being done to show guests how welcomed they are in a friend's home or at a business place. It has 6 steps which includes warming of the cups, cleansing of the leaves, removing of any bubbles from the surface of the tea and finally serving of the tea. It was done so swiftly and smoothly that it felt like watching a cultural show.

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Moving on to serious business, out came our first dimsum : Har Gao -- my personal favorite. I just love these tiny dumplings filled with steamed shrimp and bamboo pith. The best way to enjoy this is to dip it in  soy sauce mixed with a little chili oil to perk up the flavor even more.

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We also had Sio Mai which I believe must be the most popular dimsum item all over the world. In LiLi, their siomai has more lean meat and the Chef has added in some dried scallops in too. I love that I wasn't able to bite into any fatty meat as I enjoyed the Sio Mai to the tiniest bit.

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Next was the Shanghai-style steamed pork and crab meat dumpling which came with a colorful handmade bird decor. As I cringe at the sight of the feathered creature, my companions all wanted to bring a piece home. Not minding the bird that gives me goosebumps, I enjoyed the dumpling which tasted similar to the Har Gao.

We also had the Pan-Fried Shrimp & Spinach Dumpling which I think was just a-ok. Nothing spectacular about it and I, for one, am not a fan of pan-fried dimsum. Similar to the other dimsum items, the chef at LiLi has made sure that each bite is packed with a good mix of minced shrimp and spinach. It's amazing how flavorful such a small piece can be!

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I was also able to try the Deep-Fried Taro & Assorted Seafood Dumpling. While I try to stay away from deep-fried items, I figured that one piece won't hurt. It was good and I love the creamy seafood filling inside.  At this point, I felt like my tummy was about to burst. Really don't underestimate all those bite-sized dimsum as after having 5 assorted pieces, I was feeling very full already and I can't believe we still have two more items to try! Oh no!

However...I am NOT a quitter...thus I shall go on and eat till the end! *nods solemnly*

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Our second to the last dish was the Deep-Fried Bicho-Bicho with Shrimp and Wasabi-Mayonnaise sauce. i wasn't too fond of another deep-fried item so I just took a small bite and move on to the last item on the menu...

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Presenting the Glutinous Dumpling with White Chocolate and rolled in chopped peanuts! Call it love at first sight. I felt my mouth drooled at the sight of the creamy white chocolate slowly oozing out at you slice a piece open. I love how it perfectly blended well with the glutinous rice ball and the chopped peanut covering too. It  was DELICIOUS!!! If only I wasn't feeling too stuffed from all that dimsum feasting that took place earlier, I would have had another piece and another...and maybe, just another. No matter how full you may be, please do not forget to try this at LiLi.

That was just a preview of the many dimsum items available at LiLi. i was told that they have a Dimsum-all-you-can promo where for only Php. 788 nett from Monday to Saturday lunch (12nn to 3PM), diners can try LiLi's wide-array for dimsum choices.
On Sunday lunch, they make it extra special where they also offer more Cantonese dishes on top of the dimsum offerings plus desserts and free-flowing iced tea, soft drinks and beer all for only Php. 1,550 nett.

What a deal! Will definitely make time to come back here with Paul soon. :)

LiLi is located at the 5th floor, Hyatt Hotel and Casino Manila, 1588 Pedro Gil cor M.H. Del Pilar in Manila City.

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